On Our Radar
News, new research and interesting tidbits…
Pain Management for women in labour: an overview of systematic reviews
This week’s offerings from the Cochrane Library includes a summary of the evidence on the efficacy and safety of pharmacological and non-pharmacological forms of pain relief in labour. The reviewers classify pain relief options into three categories: what works (epidural, combined spinal-epidural, and inhaled analgesia); what may work (immersion in water, relaxation, acupuncture, massage and local anaesthetic nerve blocks or non-opioid drugs); and what interventions have insufficient data to make a judgment (hypnosis, biofeedback, sterile water injection, aromatherapy, TENS, or parenteral opioids). The reviewers do point out that although there is more evidence to support the efficacy of pharmacological methods of pain relief, they also come with more adverse effects. This overview is a nice summary for clients that are trying to make informed decisions.
Urgent Delivery—Maternal Death: The Avoidable Crisis
Doctors without Borders provides emergency obstetric care during times of crises such as conflict, population displacement, fragile health systems, natural disasters, and maternal mortality emergencies. In a special report released on March 7th, Doctors without Borders outline their approach to delivering care in each of these five types of crises. The report is full of inspirational stories from courageous mothers and those that provide care to them. The report also features a graphical representation of the main causes of maternal death in the developing world, as reported in 2005 by the World Health Organization. Not surprisingly, hemorrhage and infection cause 39% of maternal deaths in developing countries. Take a few moments to look through the report; it is well worth the time!
Maternal and neonatal outcomes following induction of labor: a cohort study.
Researchers at the University of Adelaide have published a large cohort study evaluating maternal and neonatal outcomes associated with birth at term by week of gestational age and by onset of labour. Over 28,000 women were classified as having either spontaneous induction of labour, induction of labour for recognized indications, and induction of labour for non-recognized indications. Induction for non-recognized indications was associated with an increased risk of caesarean section and increased risk that the infant would require care and treatment in the NICU. An interesting review of the study can be found here.
And finally, a wonderful view of pregnancy to birth in 90 seconds. This creative couple documented their journey into parenthood with a series of photographs. I particularly like the expression on the father’s face when it is time for baby to appear!
What’s on your radar this week?